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Preventative Measures Against Personal Robbery

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ROBBERY: By definition is the unlawful taking of personal property belonging to another person … by force or fear.

ROBBERY in reality is a crime "against a person" and is a frightening experience. It can result not only in the loss of property but, more importantly, in the injury or even death of the victim. It is important to take preventative measures to protect yourself as well as your property.

Remember - Robbery can happen to anyone, anywhere, anytime!



  • Always be alert and aware of the people around you.
  • Be aware of locations and situations which would make you vulnerable to crime such as ATMs, alleyways, dark parking lots, or deserted streets. Avoid areas where someone could be hiding.
  • Be alert to your surroundings, especially after dark or if you are alone.
  • Whenever possible, travel with a friend.
  • Walk confidently, at a steady pace, and make eye contact with people.
  • Do not respond to conversation from strangers.
  • Don't "flash" your jewelry. Keep it covered or hidden, if possible, and turn rings around so the stones don't show.
  • Remember - The criminal looks for someone who appears vulnerable!


If you carry a purse, carry it securely between your arm and your body. Although a purse snatcher's intent is to steal the purse, your personal safety may depend on not clinging to it.


  • Always lock your vehicle after entering or leaving it.
  • Park in well-lighted areas, preferably with others around.
  • Have your car keys in your hand so you don't have to linger before entering your vehicle.
  • Check the back seat/area of your vehicle before entering.
  • If you think you are being followed, drive to a public place or a police or sheriff's station.
  • If your vehicle should break down, open the hood and attach a white cloth to the antenna. If someone stops to help, stay in your locked vehicle and ask them to call the police, sheriff or a towing service.
  • Don't stop to aid motorists stopped on the side of the road. Call and request help for them.



  • Try to avoid waiting in isolated areas.
  • Stand away from the curb until the conveyance arrives.
  • Avoid opening your purse or wallet while boarding the conveyance. Have your money or pass in hand or easily accessible.
  • When riding on a bus, ride as close as possible to the operator.
  • Stay alert and be aware of the people around you.
  • If someone bothers you, change seats and tell the driver.
  • Carry your wallet inside a coat or in a front pocket.
  • Keep your handbag in front of you and hold it close to your body with both hands.
  • Check your purse or wallet if someone is jostling, crowding, or pushing you.
  • If you see any suspicious activity tell the driver.


  • Never leave your purse or billfold in plain view or in the pocket of a coat left unattended.
  • If you work alone or before/after normal business hours, keep the office door closed and locked.
  • If you work late, try to find another worker or security guard to walk out with you.
  • If you are in an elevator with another person, stand near the control panel. If attacked, press the alarm and as many of the buttons as possible.
  • Report all suspicious activities and/or persons to the proper authorities (office manager, building security and law enforcement).
  • Be aware of escape routes for emergencies and post the police and fire department numbers near telephones.

Novato Police Department

  • Emergency 9-1-1
  • Business 415-897-4361

Novato Fire Protection District

  • Emergency 9-1-1
  • Business  415-878-2690


Everyone should consider it his/her responsibility to report crime. Many criminals develop target areas to work as well as predictable methods of operation. When you report all the facts about a crime, it helps the police assign officers in places where crimes are occurring or where they are most likely to occur.

At least one out of two crimes in the United States goes unreported, either because people don't think the police can do anything about it, or they don't want to get involved. By not reporting a crime, criminals are allowed to continue to operate without interference.

In many cases, it is the information from victims and witnesses that leads to the arrest of a criminal. So, tell the police as much as you can. No fact is too trivial. The police need the eyes and ears of all citizens to successfully fight crime.

Bay Area Crime Stoppers is a partnership between the San Jose, San Francisco and Marin County Crime Stoppers programs. Jointly, these three programs cover nine Bay Area Counties in an effort to fight crime effectively. Police coordinators from each city’s police department, and board members from the three individual boards, work with many media sources dedicated to the program.